The U.S. Attorney’s Office announced Friday that William Villemez, of Acworth, and Justin D. Corley, of Newnan, were sentenced today to serve five years in federal prison each, both for the crime of receiving child pornography.
Both cases were brought as part of the Attorney General’s Project Safe Childhood. Launched in February 2006, Project Safe Childhood is a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices around the country, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children.
“Child pornography is a horrendous crime that involves the sexual abuse and exploitation of the most innocent members of society,” said U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates. “It is particularly distressing when a teacher purchases and downloads child pornography. Thanks to the vigilance of our law enforcement partners, this teacher will no longer be around students but will be going to federal prison.”
Villemez, according to United States Attorney Yates, the charges and other information presented in court, had ordered 32 DVDs containing images of child pornography and child erotica from a website based outside the United States between July 2008 and March 2011. Evidence showed he spent more than $750 for those DVDs. During the time that he was receiving child pornography, Villemez, 30, taught drama and dance to middle school students at Pace Academy in Atlanta.
Law enforcement traced the DVD orders to Villemez’s home in Smyrna, Ga., and during the execution of a search warrant in October 2012, found that Villemez had not only purchased the DVDs but had also downloaded child pornography onto his computer.
“Postal Inspectors are charged with protecting the U.S. mail from illegal use. As long as criminals use the U.S. mail to exploit children, the Postal Inspection Service will continue to make these types of investigations a top priority,” said Keith Morris, Postal Inspector in Charge of the Atlanta Division.
Corley, 31, was found to have downloaded more than 9,000 images of child pornography, in the form of photographs and videos. He also shared the images with others through a peer-to-peer file sharing operation that the U.S. Attorney’s office says he operated through the Union City Fire Department’s IP address.
“This defendant collected a large number of horrible images and videos portraying the sexual abuse of young children. The fact that he apparently traded some of these images with other collectors while he was on duty as a municipal firefighter is particularly troubling,” said Yates. “Mr. Corley has justly earned a significant sentence for his role in victimizing these children and by violating his public position.”
Both men pleaded guilty to the crimes.
Corley will also have 15 years of supervised release following his prison sentence and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $1,000. Villemez will have 10 years of supervised release upon completion of his sentence.
For more information about Project Safe Childhood, visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.